Happy Thanksgiving week to those of you in the states! Perhaps I should have called this November Tryptophan Talk . . . for when we all start falling into a food coma after stuffing our faces with turkey, sides and sweets. Isn’t that kind of meta? Stuffing ourselves with turkey stuffed with stuffing? But I digress. Sorry for my crudeness, vegetarians.
A Tangent off of trypto . . .
Thanks to Google auto-suggest, I learned something new! Did you know there is a phobia called Trypophobia that describes people who are afraid of holes, like pot holes or even objects like honeycomb or sponges? From Trypophobia.com: “This is a strange fear of holes that some people possess. They are afraid that they will fall into these holes until eternity.”
Since I’ve got my new book on the brain, it immediately made me think of the “What’s Next?!” question that can often feel like a black hole threatening to swallow you whole (see what I did there? Puntastic!).
Particularly around the holidays, you might be asked by loving, well-meaning friends and family who are curious about your next year . . . “So, what’s next??” Insert heart palpitations here.
If you don’t know, and the thought of trying to answer all at once gives you hives, just talk about one small thing you’re most excited about, whether it’s pursuing a new hobby, taking a class, an upcoming trip, or a small side project you’re launching. And let me know how the rest of the conversation goes! I consider this book research :)
Speaking of which . . . want to be in my next book?
I've been working on getting down the bones of a VERY rough draft of my book, and pretty soon it will be time to start working in more research and stories. That's where you come in!
I would love for you to share your own pivot-related experience. I can't promise everything will make it in, but I will reach out to you if so (and if I have any follow-up questions)—I probably won't know for sure until mid-way through 2015. That said, please aim to fill out the form in the next few weeks if possible.
And if you know someone who has a cool career-change story to share, please send them this link: http://bit.ly/pivotstory.
In other housekeeping news, the JB.me site was down for about three weeks after being subjected to “brute force attacks” . . . it’s now back up (yay for the first post in a month!) but we’re still working on getting some of the design elements back in place.
Now if only these hackers would put their efforts toward curing cancer! Or solving world peace! Or cracking the case on dark matter! Sigh.
What I am really trying to say is, thank you for your patience through all of this! Now onward ho to our cawfee tawk—I can't leave you hanging for all these holiday gatherings! Here's how to sound like a fascinating, well-read genius in 50 links or less . . . ;)
- Some of us are more woo-woo than others. Are you “spiritual not religious?” If so, you might live by the motto “everything happens for a reason.” The New York Times explores—Does Everything Happen for a Reason?
- Love this post from my mentor Susan Biali on busting resistance to get your various ducks back in a row: To Be Happy You Must Swim Against the Tide
- Fascinating study from the New York Times on how mindset affects agility, even among the elderly who have more physical limitations (or so they thought!): What If Age Is Nothing but a Mind-Set?
- Great post from Travis Bradberry for Forbes: How Successful People Handle Toxic People
- Pacific Standard says We Are All Confident Idiots: “The trouble with ignorance is that it feels so much like expertise. A leading researcher on the psychology of human wrongness sets us straight.”
- Sensei Ando’s anti-smug campaign: The Attitude I Hate Most in Martial Arts
- Jamie Varon smashes it again with her refreshing honesty and renewed perspective on what really defines success: Let Fame And Fortune Be The Byproduct Of A Life Well-Lived. A few excerpts:
"I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve spent most of my life pursuing outcomes: money, weight loss, accolades, admiration, and praise. I’ve looked forward, doing nothing unless there was explicit pay-off for me.
. . . I’ve written on the Internet for fame, Twitter followers, comments, likes, and admiration, recognition. I’ve exercised tirelessly and eaten food that my body did not want to digest for the sole purpose of thinning out my waistline. I’ve sacrificed my happiness and peace for financial reward, the same reward I would use to buy things that I assumed would bring me joy. I’ve wanted to write a book only if I know it will be: a) published; b) a bestseller; and c) bring me fortune.
. . . These outcomes are so fleeting, so empty, and so ingrained into the heartbeat of my motivation that I’ve found myself completely unable to see where my joy and passion begins or ends. What has looked like ambition in the past has turned out to be an ego-race to the finish line of outcomes I never wanted in the first place.
. . . Then, it hit me during a conversation I had with my cousin, that everything I’ve thought I desired were meant to be BYPRODUCTS, not DREAMS. Most of what I’ve desired (money, fame, fortune, accolades, admiration) are byproducts of a life well-lived and a life that is guided by passion and love."
—Jamie Varon for Thought Catalog
- Aeon on Broken Sleep: turns out people used to wake up in the middle of the night to actually do things! A very interesting look at “why broken sleep is a golden opportunity for creativity.”
- I don’t know if this looks revolting or delicious . . . NPR’s feature on The Pizza Cake
- I’ve really enjoyed doing the 7-minute workout (app here) these past few months; it’s a great burst of endorphins (especially if you do it twice in a row). Now there’s a follow-up version for people who have plateaued with the first: The Advanced 7-Minute Workout
- Mark’s Daily Apple with a great satire on How To Outsource Your Physical Activity
- Bloomberg on why The Bacon Boom Was Not an Accident.
- Love this! A Deceptively Simple Plate Designed To Stop Your Overeating
- Vox on What 9,000 years of breeding has done to corn, peaches, and other crops
- Speaking of crops, did you know plants can tell when they're being eaten?! Sorry green beans!
- The New Yorker’s Against The Grain asks, “Should you go gluten free?”
- I have ranted about the Breakfast Lobby in the past (wheat, dairy, sugary cereal, the assertion that a hearty breakfast is “the most important meal of the day”) . . . here’s The New York Times debunking years of pro-dairy campaigns: Got Milk? Might Not Be Doing You Much Good
- Awesome! From NPR: Smart Yoga Mat Could Help You Find Your Zen
- This is nuts. And a reminder to get our digital mind/body habits straightened out! The Atlantic on What Texting Does to the Spine:
"A new study suggests that looking down at a cell phone is the equivalent of placing a 60-pound weight on one's neck. Sixty pounds is roughly the weight of four adult-sized bowling balls. Or six plastic grocery bags worth of food. Or an 8-year-old."
- Eric Barker’s posts are some of my favorites. This month I loved How To Get People To Like You: 7 Ways From An FBI Behavior Expert and How To Be Efficient: Dan Ariely’s 6 New Secrets To Managing Your Time
- Quartz celebrated “Spreadsheet Day” on October 17 in Behold the awesome power of the spreadsheet, destroyer of worlds. And because spreadsheets are also one of the keys to my heart, I just bought this great mug on Amazon :) I feel like drinking out of it might actually make me smarter.
- Cool post from Ashlee Gadd on How to support the bloggers you love.
- Alexandra Franzen serves up 10 ways to answer the dreaded, “Can I pick your brain?” question...gracefully.
- Derek Sivers on How to change or build your career
- Thinking of busting out on your own? Here are 30 Compelling Reasons to Start a Business
- And for an extra boost of motivation, check out Small Business Labs’ Why the Self-Employed Flourish
- From Tim Ferriss: How to Travel to 20+ Countries...While Building a Massive Business in the Process
- Though things can get tough, and fast. On the challenges of having a team: Suddenly, I Have Three People Who Don’t Have Enough to Do
- Looking to start a podcast? Here’s Steve Chou on The Most Comprehensive Podcast Tutorial Ever—How To Start A Podcast In Under 2 Hours
- This is so damn true. And I pretty much fall for it every time! Want to Change Someone’s Mind? Just Show Them A Random Chart
- The Week says the super-rich are just as miserable as the rest of us
- Taking time off for the holidays? The Muse says Standard Out of Office Messages Are Boring. Try This Instead.
- Tom Meitner with another awesome Evernote tutorial for his Cufflinked Mag: Getting To Know Evernote
- So important to think about . . . even if a bit scary. From Systems Rock: Do You Have a Business Emergency System?
- Presentation Zen provides 10 tips for improving your presentations & speeches
- For startup geeks: here’s Sam Altman on Why Silicon Valley Works and from Both Sides of the Table, The Case for Optimism and Risk at Startups
- I loved this Fast Company article on Generation Flux’s Secret Weapon; Generation Flux as a new “psychographic”, not demographic, who cares about growth, meaning and impact. Speakin’ my language!
"I've written several articles recently about something I call Generation Flux. This refers to the group of people best positioned to thrive in today's era of high-velocity change. Fluxers are defined not by their chronological age but by their willingness and ability to adapt. These are the people who are defining where business and culture are moving. And purpose is at the heart of their actions.
Don't confuse this with social service. For these folks, a mission is the essential strategic tool that allows them to filter the modern barrage of stimuli, to motivate and engage those around them, and to find new and innovative ways to solve the world's problems. Their experiences show the critical advantages of building mission into your career and your business. Businesses that find and then live by their mission often discover that it becomes their greatest competitive advantage."
—Robert Safian, Generation Flux’s Secret Weapon
- Great post from my friend Laura Garnet for Inc.: Your Burning Questions About Getting Published Answered (if you haven't already, take a listen to my Behind-the-Book-Deal podcast here)
- Product placement continues to infiltrate the creative world! This is a bit crazy: E-Book Mingles Love and Product Placement
- The Economist on the history of publishing: From Papyrus To Pixels: The digital transformation of the way books are written, published and sold has only just begun
- The Atlantic debunks one of our most common literary myths. Did you know Romeo and Juliet Has No Balcony?! WHAT?! Tell that to John Cusack!
- What’s the best launch strategy for a book? Quora users provide robust answers.
Just for Fun
- No . . . just, no. But I do miss Patches, may she rest in peace. Bloomberg says For $100,000, You Can Clone Your Dog
- Get ready to have your mind blown!! From Quarks to Quasars: 20 Gifs That Teach You Science Concepts Better Than Your Teacher Probably Can and IFL Science: GIF Shows The Inside Of The Entire Human Body, From Top To Bottom
- This trend of insta-delivery companies are now pursuing cracks me up; The LA Times says Starbucks will deliver coffee to your desk starting in 2015. Have we completely forgotten about the benefits of WALKING?! And SUNSHINE?! We’re going to end up like those tubby characters in Wall-E!